Behaviorism / Edition 1

Behaviorism / Edition 1

by John B. Watson
     
 

Watson was the father of behaviorism. His now-revered lectures on the subject defined behaviorism as a natural science that takes the whole field of human adjustment as its own. It is the business of behaviorist psychology to predict and control human activity. The field has as its aim to be able, given the stimulus, to predict the response, or seeing the reaction,

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Overview

Watson was the father of behaviorism. His now-revered lectures on the subject defined behaviorism as a natural science that takes the whole field of human adjustment as its own. It is the business of behaviorist psychology to predict and control human activity. The field has as its aim to be able, given the stimulus, to predict the response, or seeing the reaction, to know the stimulus that produced it. Watson argued that psychology is as good as its observations: what the organism does or says in the general environment.

Watson identified "laws" of learning, including frequency and recency. Kimble makes it perfectly clear that Watson's behaviorism, while deeply indebted to Ivan Pavlov, went beyond the Russian master in his treatment of cognition, language, and emotion. It becomes clear that Behaviorism is anything but the reductionist caricature it is often made out to be in the critical literature. For that reason alone, the work merits a wide reading.

Behaviorism, as was typical of the psychology of the time, offered a wide array of applications—all of which can be said to fall on the enlightened side of the ledger. At a time of mixed messages, Watson argued against child beating and abuse, for patterns of enlightened techniques of factory management, and for curing the sick and isolating the small cadre of criminals not subject to correction. And anticipating Thomas Szasz, he argued against a doctrine of strictly mental diseases, and for a close scrutiny of behavioral illness and disturbances. Kimble's brilliant introduction to Watson ends with a challenge to subjectivism to provide evidence that Watson's behaviorism cannot explain human actions without introspective notions of the mind. This genuine classic of social science hi our century remains relevant not just for the conduct of psychological research, but for studies in the philosophy of science and the sociology of knowledge.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781560009948
Publisher:
Transaction Publishers
Publication date:
01/01/1997
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
276
Sales rank:
810,828
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.62(d)

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Table of Contents

Introduction to the Transaction Edition
IWhat is Behaviorism?3
IIHow to Study Human Behavior19
IIIThe Human Body: Part I42
IVThe Human Body: Part II61
VAre there any Human Instincts?: Part I74
VIAre there any Human Instincts?: Part II87
VIIEmotions: Part I108
VIIIEmotions: Part II132
IXOur Manual Habits159
XTalking and Thinking180
XIDo we Always Think in Words202
XIIPersonality216
Index249

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